Greetings from the Willamette Valley

2013 Vintage Report and Tasting Notes

The Essence of Pinot Noir!”


2013 Vintage and Vineyard News

“A tale of Two Harvests: one very early and one normal, with rain in between.  They started as one very early harvest thanks to a very consistent, warm, growing season, the warmest on record up to final ripening mid-September.  An unanticipated 30 year rain even of 5” then appeared the last days of September, made of remnants from a typhoon that had hit Japan days before, ushering in a spate of cool weather, interrupting the season, slowing ripening and turning it into two discrete picks, with early Pinot noir ferments already in barrel before remaining grapes were ripe and picked! Although grapes ripe during the rain were vulnerable to botrytis, earlier and later picks showed very good quality, with many considering the coolness and longer hang-time a big benefit, preserving acidity and flavors, while minimizing alcohol.   Color, texture, balance and acidity on the whole were good for the vintage.  Crop loads were moderate to high, except for blocks and varieties lost to rain.”

The “typhoon” rain was a blessing in my mind.  The reason being that we had a smaller rain event of about 3” in early/mid- September.  And then it was warm and unusually humid for almost two weeks, promoting the possibility of botrytis.   There had been some damage from this and you could smell vinegar as you walked through some vineyards from all the fruit flies (drosophila Melanogaster mainly) infecting vineyards with acetobacter.   The fact that the typhoon came along and literally “washed” the grapes and then the temperatures remained cold, allowed us to hang longer and get better flavors without losing crop to botrytis.  I am a big believer in longer hang time and going into the rain/cold later days of a season to get better flavors as long as the fruit does not fall apart.  Our vineyard was again very well managed this year and there was very little infection of botrytis.   The wines are lovely!


  • Ripe grapes were destemmed, crushed and inoculated with various strains of cultured yeast to maximize complexity, after cold soaking.
  • Daily gentle punchdowns were used to extract optimal flavor and color and minimize harsh tannins. The punchdowns can vary by block, tank and day of fermentation. Every ferment is tasted daily to evaluate the evolution of tannins, modify extraction techniques and find the right moment to drain the wine off the skins.
  • The “777” was aged for 12 months in various types of French oak barrels. The “Le Terre Foss” saw 14 months in French oak, utilizing the same barrel regimen.


2013 “777” Pinot Noir

The “777”possesses a deep ruby color, in addition to a fragrant bouquet of ripe black fruit, including blackberries, black cherries and plums. The “777” is the more “masculine” of the two offerings, being slightly more full-bodied. This elegant wine should age well for eight to ten years and is noted for its long, velvety finish. Very complex in structure, the notes of plums, figs and black currants, offer up a vibrant, unctuously-textured effort.

Technical Data

2013 “777” Pinot Noir
Total Acidity 6.3
pH 3.66
Alcohol 13.8%
Blend 100% Dijon Clone 777
Cases Produced 325
Food Pairings Salmon grilled on cedar planks, rotisserie chicken, grilled tuna, lamb chops and much more.

2013 “Le Terre Foss” Pinot Noir

The “Le Terre Foss’” hallmark is its rich red fruit of strawberries, red cherries, raspberries, rose pedal, plum and damp earth and spice; seemingly, always with hints of roasted meats and mushrooms. It is medium in color and the more “feminine” of the offerings. Like its sibling, the “Le Terre Foss” should age well for eight to ten years and is also noted for its long, lingering finish. All of this, results in a remarkably Burgundian style wine.

Technical Data

2013 “Le Terre Foss” Pinot Noir
Total Acidity 7.0
pH 3.68
Alcohol 13.5%
Blend 75% Dijon Clone 777, 25% Dijon Clones 113, 114, and Pommard
Cases Produced 275
Food Pairings Salmon grilled on cedar planks, rotisserie chicken, pork tenderloin, roast turkey and much more.

Most Recent Awards

2013 “777” Pinot Noir Silver Medal @ the San Francisco International Wine Competition

2013 “Le Terre Foss” Pinot Noir Silver Medal @ the San Francisco International Wine Competition

2013 “777” Pinot Noir “Silver Medal” San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition

2013 “Le Terre Foss” Pinot Noir “Bronze Medal” San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition

The entire Foss family thanks you for your continued support and we are glad you enjoy our wines!